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date: 11 April 2021

Abstract and Keywords

I argue that the chapters in this section only modestly challenge the “traditional mindreading account,” which sees the capacity for mental state attribution as central to human social cognition. This internalist, cognitivist account has already been refined in recent years to give greater attention to unreflective, dynamic social interaction and non-mindreading processes. The chapters here support a kind of embodied social cognition that does not involve mindreading. They also support the idea that an embedded/situated cognition perspective can inform the nature of the mindreading and non-mindreading forms of social cognition, particularly their use during dynamic social interaction. Further, important empirical questions arise about the importance of social interaction in the development of mindreading. But the more radical extended cognition thesis only appears sporadically and is weakly defended. Thus, the 4E perspective represented here does not challenge the importance of the “representation-hungry,” internal capacity for mindreading.

Keywords: social cognition, mindreading, embodied simulation, embodied cognition, false-belief tasks, predictive processing paradigm, second-person engagement, social interaction, embedded cognition, extended cognition

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